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Old 04-11-2007, 06:45 AM   #1
MrCranky
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Registered: Jul 2006
Distribution: Debian
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Kernel upgrade from 2.2 to 2.6.8, lost network card/functionality


Hi there - I have a server box that was running Debian sarge until very recently, until a routine aptitude upgrade accidentally started the upgrade to etch. The upgrade couldn't go through, as my kernel was still 2.2 something, so I downgraded by pinning sources and went back to sarge. However I'd like to move up to etch, so once I was happy the box was running correctly with sarge again, I installed kernel-image-2.6-686. After putting initrd into my lilo.conf, installing the kernel and rebooting, on startup, ifup complained about eth0, and indeed I have no network connectivity any more. The output from ifup eth0 looks like:

Code:
sit0: unknown hardware address type 776
SIOCSIFADDR: No such device
eth0: ERROR while getting interface flags: No such device
sit0: unknown hardware address type 776
Bind socket to interface: No such device
Failed to bring up eth0
The network card still shows up in lspci:
Code:
0000:00:0e.0 Ethernet controller: Macronix, Inc. [MXIC] MX987x5 (rev 25)
I'm using the standard pre-compiled kernel package and don't really want to get into compiling my own kernel. If the driver/module for my particular network card is no longer standard, is there any way for me to install/enable it easily? Alternatively, can someone provide advice on downgrading the kernel given that I can no longer get packages (since I lack a network connection!).
 
Old 04-11-2007, 03:16 PM   #2
Mara
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Try to load the driver manually (as root):
modprobe tulip
Do you get an error?
 
Old 04-12-2007, 04:18 AM   #3
MrCranky
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Registered: Jul 2006
Distribution: Debian
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No, in fact once I've run modprobe tulip, the device is detected and I can bring up the network with ifup and dhclient. The vital bits of information I was missing were: 1) tulip is the generic driver which supports my network card, and 2) use modconf to install modules and have them persist when you reboot.

My apologies for posting such a simple question - it's been a long time since my initial installation from CD (the last time I would have run modconf probably - as part of the install), and I haven't had to tinker with it since - which is as it should be!

Anyway, I hope this thread proves useful as a quick tip to others like me who run into this while upgrading.

To summarise: lost functionality because upgrading the kernel meant that the drivers for the network device were no longer loaded. To fix, use modprobe and/or modconf to select drivers appropriate for the device, then reboot. Simple!
 
Old 04-14-2007, 04:30 PM   #4
Mara
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Registered: Feb 2002
Location: Grenoble
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 9,527

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Adding the driver to /etc/modules.conf should help in this case.
 
  


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